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Thread: More English spoken where?

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    The Blue Max 31310's Avatar
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    More English spoken where?

    Finally going back to ride western Europe after nearly forty year absence & brushing up on my German & French. Question is, does one hear English more in France or Germany these days? Rarely heard English anywhere back in the day, suspect France most likely for no 'parlez Anglais' than 'nicht verstehen Englisch".
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    Registered User GALA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by airoilheadbeemerguy View Post
    Finally going back to ride western Europe after nearly forty year absence & brushing up on my German & French. Question is, does one hear English more in France or Germany these days? Rarely heard English anywhere back in the day, suspect France most likely for no 'parlez Anglais' than 'nicht verstehen Englisch".
    It depends where you are: in big cities they speak English, but if you are in a small village will ask someone " where is a gas station", don't wait a clear answer in English.
    Just use your arms, hands and smile

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    Lost again Texpaul's Avatar
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    Was over there about 3 years ago. Southern Germany, Austria, Switzerland, northern Italy. Never had a problem. Some older folks didn't do english but just about evryone else did to some extent, even in the smaller towns. Never the less knowing some basic words and phases, like please and thank you, never hurt. Doesn't matter where you are people seem to sppreciate it if you at least try to speak to them in thier native tongue.
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    IBA #44567 Ken F's Avatar
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    My wife is French, and we travel there yearly. For about the last 15 - 20 years english has been required in schools, so it should not be a problem. Keep in mind however that if you do not use ANY language which is foreign to you, you loose it pretty quickly.

    I wouldn't think you will have a problem though. As mentioned earlier, they always seem to smile and really appreciate the fact that you make an effort to speak to them in their native language, and seem very willing to help you get over verbal blockages! lol

    460
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    Survivor akbeemer's Avatar
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    In my experience, having lived in Germany for 6 years, you are more likely to find English speakers in Germany rather than France. This is particularly true in the old West Germany area as opposed to the old DDR.
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    100,000+ miler 32232's Avatar
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    A couple of years ago we found very little English spoken in Italy outside of the big cities, everybody spoke excellent English in Austria, most Germans and Swiss spoke functional English.

    The dirtiest look i got was when I made the mistake of addressing someone in French in the German speaking part of Switzerland. They preferred speaking English to French.
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    Cannonball Rider #52 darrylri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 32232 View Post
    The dirtiest look i got was when I made the mistake of addressing someone in French in the German speaking part of Switzerland. They preferred speaking English to French.
    Funny, I had a somewhat similar experience in the French part of Switzerland. In spite of a crowd of 6 or 8 people trying to help, none of them could deal with English or (my rough approximation of) German. Aren't all Swiss supposed to learn French, German and Italian in school?
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  8. #8
    BOKRIJDER
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    I've found the Swiss very prone to tourist burnout. It tends to happen quite early in the season. An easy dodge is to deny speaking a particular language.

    To the OP's question, France most likely has fewest English speakers by % of population.


    Bokrijder

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    BiLingual

    Everyone understands English, if it is spoken loudly enough.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 460Jetboat View Post
    My wife is French, and we travel there yearly. For about the last 15 - 20 years english has been required in schools, so it should not be a problem. Keep in mind however that if you do not use ANY language which is foreign to you, you loose it pretty quickly.

    I wouldn't think you will have a problem though. As mentioned earlier, they always seem to smile and really appreciate the fact that you make an effort to speak to them in their native language, and seem very willing to help you get over verbal blockages! lol

    460
    Per the above your odds of an english speaker take a quantum leap IF you ask a teenager for help. I do the same in Mexico when I want to find an internet cafe quickly.

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